The last question I asked in yesterday's post about the Washington Nationals' pursuit of now-former Kansas City Royals' right-hander Zack Greinke, after wondering whether or not, "D.C. GM Mike Rizzo [would give] up [RHP Jordan] Zimmermann, [RP Drew] Storen and [SS Danny] Espinosa to get the Nats a top-of-the-rotation arm?", ended up being the important one:
"Is there any chance Zack Greinke would approve a trade to the Nats, who are on his no-trade list, if Mr. Rizzo agreed to part with that package?"
According to SI.com's Jon Heyman (@SI_JonHeyman), and now confirmed by MLB.com's Bill Ladson (@washingnats), the answer was "No." Zack Greinke reportedly approved a deal to Milwaukee, which the Royals and Brewers are set to announce at some point today, but only after the right-hander rejected a deal that would have brought him to Washington, D.C.:
@SI_JonHeyman: "Royals were close to deal w/ Nats. but Greinke had right to reject trade to wash and told KC he wouldnt go. he approved Crew, tho."
@Washingnats: "I have confirmed @SI_JonHeyman's report. The #Nats had a deal with the Royals to acquire RHP Zack Greinke, but he used his no-trade clause and turned the deal down."
MASNSports.com's Phil Wood quoted an anonymous source yesterday in an article entitled, "Henry Heaves It Hard", who added Derek Norris' name to a package that ESPN.com's Buster Olney had reported yesterday in an article entitled, "The accelerated market for Zack Greinke" the Royals had asked for from the Nats in return for the 27-year-old former Cy Young award-winning starter. SI.com's Jon Heyman confirmed this morning, (again on Twitter @SI_JonHeyman), that the, "Royals had been talking about getting RHP Drew Storen, SS Daniel Espinosa, others from Nats. but Greinke said no to Washington."
The package that Milwaukee reportedly sent to Kansas City for Greinke and SS Yuniesky Betancourt, according to multiple reports, includes Alcides Escobar, a 24-year-old shorstop with 192 games of MLB experience in which he's posted a (.250/.298/.335) slash line; 24-year-old center fielder Lorenzo Cain who debuted this year in Milwaukee and put up a (.306/.348/.415) line in 43 games and 147 at bats; '08 1st Round pick 20-year-old right-hander Jake Odorizzi and a PTBNL. (w/ "P" = Pitcher)
SI.com's Jon Heyman, again on Twitter (@SI_JonHeyman) writes that, "Greinke rejected Nats but accepted #Brewers [because] he believes Milwaukee can win sooner, i hear. also said to like city." After seven losing seasons with the Royals, the decision on Greinke's part makes sense. Had he been joining a rotation that featured Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann, the future in the nation's capital may have seemed brighter, but with even the Nats admitting that 2012-13 is the date by which they'll begin to compete for the division (or at least the Wild Card?), the decision on the 27-year-old right-hander's part is understandable. Mike Rizzo's willingness to part with a package, (the true composition of which we'll likely never know), does that make sense? Would the deal have gutted the Nats' roster/organization? Or brought them closer to their goal of making waves in the National League? What do the Nats do now? Jump on Carl Pavano? Try to convince the Rays, who yesterday said that they won't deal a starter, to part with Matt Garza? Or does Washington wait for Strasburg's return to the top of the rotation and keep the team in tact? What will D.C. GM Mike Rizzo do next?